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Had to join

AnonymousUserAAnonymousUser Posts: 49,578
edited 06/11/2012 - 7:25 AM in New Member Introductions
Some of the threads I read here were as if I'd written them myself and literally brought tears to my eyes.

I'm a 38y/o white male, I've had back pain since I was 18, it'd flare up now and then enough to put me out of work for a few months, but I'd be able to go back to normal life just with pain.

I was given 5mg percocet back then, but wouldn't take them. About 1998 I realized the only one I was impressing with how much pain I could take was myself, and I wasn't impressed! 30 percocet would last me at the minimum 3mo sometimes 6mo and occasionally a year!

In 2001 it got bad and I had a L5/S1 discectomey/laminectomy, I spent most of 2002 babying it and getting tighter and worse again. I had 13 years of printing expierience that are totally useless now because I couldn't go back to that industry.

Late 2002 I started taking jiu jitsu and felt REALLY good after every class, I think I got to feeling as good as I ever would, still had pain now and then, but 5mg percocet now and then kept it under control. I eventually got a good job again in 2005 and the classes wained back to none.

The pain has been getting increasingly worse over the last 3 years, The 5mg Percocet were like nothing after a while but I couldn't get anything stronger. I had a discagram in July of this year when I thought I was at my worst, nothing against the Dr that did it, but it really flared things up bad and I've been out of work since then. The only good thing was that they finally deemed me worthy of stronger pain meds.

My family was supportive through everything until the day I got put on oxycontin, then it seems like they just turned on me. I got a email saying that I was faking this whole thing for the pain meds and I needed to knock off the BS and go back to work!

All throughout my youth I was always straight edge, no alcohol, no drugs, I never even drank a beer before let alone ever been drunk. I smoked a cigarette when I was 21 to see what it was about.

So now here I am with pain pills that I'm hesitant to take, not only because of the real world possibility of becoming addicted, the constipation problems but I also feel like it cost me my family. (Extended family, my household is good)

Physical therapy isn't helping, I won't take my oxy's everyday because I don't want to become addicted even though some of the most important people to me already think I am and refuse to talk to me or even aknowledge I exist anymore.

I have so much pain, I sound like a broken record, not only do the bad parts of my back hurt, my shoulders, biceps, hip joints and thighs hurt, I think that's a withdrawl symptom of not taking the opiates, I'm not positive, but just the thought of it that makes me not want to take them even more and I wind up being in way more pain than I should be and only take the oxy's when the muscle pains are all gone and it's just back pain.

Meanwhile I'm on partial disability from a job where I WAS making the most money I've ever been able to make with my crappy education/location, now I'm trying to live on 40% of what I was making before this, there's nothing I'd like more than to be able to go back to work and be getting those paychecks.

I sold some of my favorite possessions to get a zero gravity chair, THIS thing HAS helped a lot, I'll give it that much.

I don't know what else to say...it sucks. Sorry this was so long, I coulda just said "My name is Justin, This sucks"!


  • dilaurodilauro ConnecticutPosts: 11,347

    For a Spine-Health Site introduction, Click on :

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    If you have any questions, feel free to contact (PM) any one of the Moderators here Priestess , Bruce , Paulgla, DiLauro

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    Check the various tabs at the top of the Spine-Health page and you will find so much that is offered here.

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    formal medical advise. You should always consult with your doctors.

    To get back to the Forums, you can always click on Forum Home

    Please feel free to contact me at rdilauro@gmail.com or send me a message
    I've run across many people who have similar stories to yours. They seem hesitant to take their narcotic pain medications. That could really backfire. The purpose of the pain medications is NOT to eliminate your pain, but to control and manage it so that you can take on the required tasks to help reduce future flare ups. When you do not take the medications as prescribed, many times the pain level gets so high, that the one dosage doesnt do anything, and people feel they need to take the second or third dosage, which is not good.
    The best advice you will ever receive in terms of medications is TO FOLLOW THE DOCTORS ORDERS and DO NOT DEVIATE UNLESS you have discussed it with your doctor and THEY AGRE!
    Ron DiLauro Veritas-Health Forums Manager
    I am not a medical professional. I comment on personal experiences
    You can email me at: rdilauro@veritashealth.com
  • I have to agree with Ron, even your own assessment of

    "About 1998 I realized the only one I was impressing with how much pain I could take was myself, and I wasn't impressed!"

    Pain meds have this terrible media onslaught that has the public misinformed and families turning on each other over sensationalism.If you work with your doctor with honesty, take as directed you should have no problem esp. since it seems you are a responsible person in the first place.Yes, your body could become "addicted" in the sense of in terms of dependence after long term use, but it can be dealt with medically.Addiction where you are abusing to get a "high" is different.Please,consider having family members read these forums to see what others are going through, pain can take a serious toll on your mind,body and soul as your experiencing.

    BTW: Some hospitals have free Pain seminars to teach chronic pain patients how to cope and allow you to bring a family member to open their eyes as well.

    OH YES, Welcome to Spine-Health!!!!
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  • Welcome Justin you came to the right place for help and support. I am also new here and am glad I found them.

    We feel your pain. I am suppose to get a discogram, actually i am requesting one because im sick of getting treated like my pain is fake also. Does this test help find all the answers? I heard it can tell which disc is hurting and leaking disc material.

    dawn :)))
  • I am really sorry to hear of what you are going through with an unsupportive family to boot! Have you considered not telling anyone what pain meds that you are on? There are lots of folks here that keep it to themselves. After all it really is none of their business! I strongly urge you to take the meds if it reduces your pain and gives you a better quality of life. Constant pain is not good for you mentally or physically.If and when the time comes that you need to get off the opiates, there are drugs that will prevent you from going through withdrawals. Did you know that it is much safer for you to take opiates than other short acting pain meds? They do not damage your organs and as my doc says, your body hardly even notices them. For long term chronic pain opiates are really the safer choice. I hate that their is such a stigma associated with it but for the chronic pain patients that truly need it there really is no shame in taking it. Good luck to you and please keep us posted.
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  • I have mixed feelings about it. The procedure itself went well, I was partially sedated and don't remember much. In fact I only have a ~2second memory of the procedure. Here's the findings from it http://home.comcast.net/~trianglechoke/disco.jpg

    The memory I have is when they tried to get into L5/S1 they said I woke up and came off the table.

    I've had 2 surgeons say they won't operate cause there's too many bad discs, and one say he might but that discagram means nothing to him and he wants to repeat the whole discagram again with no sedation at all. No thanks on that!

    Thursday I see the surgeon that did my 1st surgery, I'm hoping with everything I've got that he'll be able to do something. It looks to me if they could just fix L5/S1 a little better, I'd be good to go for a while. I'm hoping I'm a candidate for a disc replacement. Here's what I'm working with now:


    if that image doesn't work, here's the link:


    You guys are right about taking them as prescribed, I talked to my Dr about it and said everything I said here, all he said was he knew where I was coming from. I'll probably just go back to the Rx'd doesages as I can function a lot better, the thing with that is, I feel like people are looking at me and thinking "See there's nothing wrong with him". I can't go back to my job on pain medication, so it almost doesn't matter.
  • all wonder. You must take care of you.
  • We've all had our moments with family members or friends look at us and wonder if we make it up for the pain pills. Most of my family thinks I should have given up the Percocet and Valium by now. I mean after all my ACDF surgery was 7 weeks ago now. :? For them that was a lifetime ago. For me it's like it was yesterday. Believe me I used to be just like you and was actually going to my next Dr's appointment and tell him about the old me. The old me would have dragged myself into his office smiled at him and told him life was great. But right now it's not in me. I hurt and he needs to know that I still hurt. I stick with my pain med schedule now because I was like you. It had to hurt REALLY bad before I would even reach for the bottle but I've learned my lesson and I can now take my medicine and be a functioning member of society holding down my full time job. Please know that we are all here for you. Here's wishing for you a pain free day.
  • You came to the right place, many of us are dealing with the exact same thing as you. I also had a discogram this summer which put me in elevated pain for months. They found two discs are causing me severe pain, but my surgeon does not reccommend surgery.

    I am on extended release morphine and after a few days of taking it my body adjusted to it and I am able to run my business with minimal effects. For me I am less aware when in pain, my wife actually makes sure I take my meds, because I am a better husband and father on it. I am on a very slow paced PT plan and feel like I am making progress, I'm hoping within six months to a year I am off daily meds and able to live fairly pain free.

    Please stop by the chat board on this site. There is a great group of people that are able to listen and give great advise. Take care...........Mitch
  • Welcome to Spine Health. I'm curious as to why you can't go back to your job due to taking Oxycontin? I worked the entire time I was taking Oxycontin, Percocet and Oxycodone. It did not cause any impairment and I was quite capable at my job.

    Sorry to hear that your family is having issues. Just remember that those are "their issues" and not yours. You are not the one trying to make another person feel guilty for seeking help.

    Well I hope that you get some good news from the doc on Thursday.

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